The “New” Trade Deadline

In the past couple of years at the NFL trade deadline, we have witnessed trades or acquisitions before the deadline happen that shake up the league. In the past two years, we have seen, for the first time, two players go for two first-round picks. Khalil Mack being the first player to go for two first-round picks and Jalen Ramsey being the second.

We have also seen teams move on from players seemingly out of nowhere around this time even players who would be considered star players for that team. Such as Tampa Bay moving on from Gerald McCoy earlier this year, and Green Bay moving on from Mike Daniels. Both of these releases came out of nowhere but both players were released due to contractual issues, but still, McCoy and Daniels are top five at the defensive tackle position. Which just goes to show you that no one is safe when the trade deadline gets closer.

NFL Trade Deadline: Trades Teams Should Make

In this article, I will only be reviewing a few teams. Teams who I think can turn their season around or continue to dominate by filling their biggest gap. Teams like the Broncos, Buccaneers, Steelers, and Titans who have solid rosters but need a QB I am not including.

NFL Trade Deadline Needs: Arizona Cardinals – Offensive line

Aside from the offensive line, they have good players spread throughout the roster. The Cardinals have good enough defensive players to justify going after offensive lineman before the deadline. Arizona’s biggest priority has to be to protect the future of the team which is Kyler Murray.

  • Washington Redskins LT Trent Williams: One of the top O-Lineman in the league. Williams has been sitting the season out due to contract issues. The Cardinals could get him cheaper than usual because of the holdout
  • Tennessee Titans RT Jack Conklin: Conklin was an All-Pro his rookie season in 2016. He was hampered by injuries last year and the Titans declined to pick up his fifth-year option. So, he should be cheap to get.
  • Washington Redskins Guard Brandon Scherff: Another Redskins lineman that would be worth a high to a mid-round draft pick.

NFL Trade Deadline Needs: Atlanta Falcons – Secondary

Most people would argue that the Falcons need help on the defensive line the most. However, Atlanta has got to be able to stop the passing game. Especially if they are going to continue the three-man rush scheme. Which is hard enough to get pressure doing even if you have a great D-Line. If Atlanta continues to not rush the passer that heavy than they have to be able to play pass defense. Desmond Trufant is not playing on the level of a true number one cornerback and Safety Keanu Neal is out. They need help in the secondary to even try to turn this season around.

  • Arizona Cardinals CB Patrick Peterson: After serving an eight-game suspension for PED’S Peterson is active again. Peterson is one season away from free agency and the Cardinals have not shown interest in re-signing him. The eight-time Pro Bowler would be worth a 1st and 3rd or 4th round pick without question.
  • Denver Broncos CB Chris Harris Jr.: The Broncos number one cornerback has given his team an ultimatum. Either re-sign him for close to $15 million a year or trade him. The Falcons have plenty of cap space he would work on his price if they got him.
  • Minnesota Vikings CB Xavier Rhodes: Rhodes may not be the top tier Cornerback he was at one time. However, he is only 29 years old and still an amazing coverage defensive back.

NFL Trade Deadline Needs: Baltimore Ravens – Front Seven

John Harbaugh and his Ravens are one of the more complete teams in the league. A top-10 offensive line, A great younger starting QB, A young group of wide receivers, and a top-10 defense. However, the one weak part of this team is getting to the quarterback. Baltimore has only three players with more than one sack, and nobody has more than four. The Ravens also lost middle linebacker C.J. Moseley to free agency this past offseason. So, for as good as the Ravens secondary is playing their pass rush needs to catch up.

  • Atlanta Falcons OLB/DE Vic Beasley: The Falcons placed Beasley on the trade block earlier this week. They are trying to get something out of him before his contract expires. Beasley, who had 15 sacks in 2016 has not had more than five in a year since. However, the Ravens might be able to revive his career with that stout defense that they have.
  • New England Patriots LB Jamie Collins: The Patriots got Collins on a one year $1.05 million with a $250k guaranteed contract. The Ravens could get Collins for cheap, especially with that Patriots’ next man up mentality. Collins has 4.5 sacks, three interceptions, and two forced fumbles already this year.
  • Carolina Panthers DT Gerald McCoy: The Panthers got McCoy when he was released by Tampa Bay. They signed him to a one-year deal which would help the Ravens trade for him. McCoy is a perennial pro bowler who makes your defensive line immediately better.

NFL Trade Deadline Needs: Buffalo Bills – Wide Receiver

The Bills have one of the best defenses in the league. They have a strong arm young QB in Josh Allen who is getting better every game. However, Allen doesn’t have too many weapons to get the ball to. The Bills drafted RB Devin Singletary, also they picked up wide receivers John Brown and Cole Beasley in free agency. The problem is that Beasley is more of a slot man, and Brown is more of a deep ball target. They need a good number one receiver.

  • Cincinnati Bengals WR A.J. Green: The 31-year old Green has been a big part of the Bengals since he was drafted. His production has not gone down but the Bengals do have a few receivers that could take over the number one spot. He would be the perfect fit for the Bills offense that needs a tall possession receiver for Josh Allen to target. Green should also be coming back from injury in the next couple of weeks.
  • Atlanta Falcons WR Mohamed Sanu: Sanu is a solid number two wide receiver behind Julio Jones. However, he got knocked down to WR3 when the Falcons took Calvin Ridley who quickly became the number two wide receiver. He is a perfect possession receiver for quick throws. He also opens up the offensive playbooks with reverses and quick screens
  • Houston Texans WR Will Fuller: The Texans have DeAndre Hopkins cemented at the number one spot without question. They also acquired Kenny Stills in a trade with Miami where the Texans wanted Laremy Tunsil. Fuller could easily make himself the number one receiver with his speed, quick cuts, and good possession hands. He would be perfect for Allen’s big arm.

NFL Trade Deadline Needs: Cleveland Browns – Offensive Line

The Browns are on the verge of losing control of a season that had high hopes. However, Cleveland could really find themselves back in the elite conversation with upgrades on the offensive line. If they could buy Baker Mayfield more time he could return to that 2018-2019 form.

  • Washington Redskins LT Trent Williams: I am going to keep putting Williams on these lists. If a team needs offensive line help they should try to get Williams. The way things have gone down in Washington it’s just hard to see him staying there. With that said the Redskins need to get something for him while they still can. Plus he will fit into any offense and make a difference immediately.
  • Denver Broncos LT Garett Bolles: Bolles has been struggling of late. However, a lot of people have struggled in Denver. A new offensive scheme might change things. It would be hard to get Denver to part ways with him but they need to rebuild with youth. So, draft capital would probably be enough to get them to move on from Bolles.
  • New York Giants OT Nate Solder: Solder may not be a big name tackle ever since he left New England. He may be getting older but he is still just as solid a tackle as you could ask for. He is getting older now and he still has a big contract. I think New York would be willing to let Solder and his contract go for a reasonable amount.

NFL Trade Deadline Needs: Detroit Lions – Wide Receiver or Offensive Line

The Lions have definitely surprised people with their level of play. With as good as their defense is playing they could actually make a good run this year. That is if they could just get a little bit of help on offense. They need to get Matthew Stafford just a little bit of help on either the O-Line or the receiver position. They have smaller speedy receivers but they could benefit from a big possession receiver. Also, they could use a better pass protector on the O-Line.

  • Washington Redskins LT Trent Williams: I will go with Williams again. He can single handily sure up the left side of that line.
  • Philadelphia Eagles WR Nelson Agholor: Agholor would be the perfect tall, big handed receiver for the Lions offense. A nice tall target for Stafford to either throw short or deep too.
  • New Orleans Saints WR Dez Bryant: I don’t know the time table for Bryant’s return. If he could return this year he would be the perfect kind of target for Big Arm Stafford. Bryant has top-end speed still. Plus his height is a real advantage with a QB who has an arm like Stafford.

NFL Trade Deadline Needs: Houston Texans – Running Back

The Texans are another more complete team. I honestly didn’t think that letting Jadeveon Clowney go was a smart idea. However, Houston’s defense has looked as good as ever. The one small hole in this roster is the running back position. Lamar Miller is out for the rest of the season. Now they are left with two smaller backs to work with. Houston needs to get stronger in the run game because it will take the pressure off of Deshaun Watson. It will also make it possible to open up the playbook and make the offense more versatile.

  • Los Angeles Chargers RB Melvin Gordon: The Chargers told Gordon he could seek a trade. Gordon held out for the first few games this season over a contract dispute. The Chargers were actually playing the same while Gordon was holding out. I am sure they would love to get rid of him after the holdout and get draft capital for him.
  • New Orleans Saints RB Latavius Murray: Murray is a speedy yet stronger back who really runs hard. Murray is coming off an amazing game against the Bears in which he had two touchdowns. In that game, he proved to me that he is a perfect running up the middle back. The Saints already have Alvin Kamara so they should let Murray go cheap.
  • Arizona Cardinals RB Chase Edmonds: The Cardinals back up running back Edmonds has been amazing lately. With four touchdowns in his last three games, he is the kind of speed back who can strike fast. He also would be able to fit into the Texans offense and help in the passing game. Edmonds would also be able to power run well behind that re-vamped offensive line.

NFL Trade Deadline Needs: Oakland Raiders – Front Seven

The Raiders have struggled to apply pressure on opposing team’s Quarterbacks. Which makes the Khalil Mack trade even more puzzling. They did draft Clelin Ferrell with their first pick last year. Ferrell alone has not been enough to get to the backfield.

  • New England Patriots DE Michael Bennett: Nobody is safe in New England. Even newly acquired pass rusher Michael Bennett who the Patriots are rumored to be used as a trade chip. It never costs much to get players from Belichick so Oakland should be able to get him for pretty cheap.
  • Los Angeles Rams DE Dante Fowler Jr.: Fowler has been a consistent pass rusher in the league since being drafted by the Jaguars 3rd overall in 2015. You may call him a bust considering how high he was drafted. However, he can consistently pressure the QB which is what Oakland needs.
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers DT Ndamukong Suh: Tampa Bay signed Suh to a one-year deal this offseason. Oakland could trade for him and get him re-signed. That would give them a good pass rusher who would be signed through the end of next season. One less position they have to worry about this offseason.

Overall Thoughts

These teams should not be scared of the trade deadline. If they just fill their biggest gaps they could really turn their seasons around or keep up the domination. Especially with how many players have told their teams they are unhappy or that they want out. Now more than ever teams’ front offices should use the trade deadline to their advantage. With the deadline getting closer teams start to panic to unload a player. You never know one trade could be what is holding your team back from complete dominance this season.

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Top Photo: Geoff Burke/USA TODAY Sports


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